Asinnajaq was born in Kuujjuaq, Nunavik, and resides in Montreal. She is a visual artist, filmmaker and writer. Since childhood, Asinnajaq has been immersed in storytelling and the sharing of her cultural heritage . In grade school, alongside her mother, she led a workshop on Inuit culture at the McCord Museum in Montreal . Inspired by her father, celebrated filmmaker Jobie Weetaluktuk, Asinnajaq began filmmaking and attended NSCAD University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, where she was able to draw from her previous knowledge of film and push her theoretical and conceptual understanding of the medium .
Recently, Asinnajaq completed the short film Three Thousand
(2017), which was put together from thousands of hours of historical footage from the National Film Board of Canada's archive. On working with the archive, Asinnajaq has said:
“Our understanding of the past is always evolving, and the representation of Indigenous Peoples has changed dramatically over the decades. You get these government-sponsored films from the '50s, subtly or not so subtly racist, that promote residential schooling. And then you’ll find recent footage by Inuit filmmakers that presents a completely different perspective. It’s a fantastic resource for an artist” .
For Three Thousand
Asinnajaq selected particular images or sequences of film and worked with animator Patrick Defasten to create original animations and, ultimately, produce a work that reframes the past and creates a vision for the future . The film
is currently on display as part of the Winnipeg Art Gallery's exhibition Insurgence/Resurgence
January 2018: Three Thousand (2017) is nominated for Best Short Documentary at the 2018 Canadian Screen Awards by the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television
May 2017: Named a REVEAL Indigenous Art Award laureate.
October 10, 2016: Led workshop with Kat Baulu and Echo Henoche through the katingavik inuit arts festival.
October 2016: Participated in Inuit Studies Conference at Memorial University of Newfoundland.
November 2015: Led a workshop at To Light the Fire symposium at the Newfoundland and Labrador Indigenous Arts Symposium.
1, Britt Gallpen, “Isabella Weetaluktuk,” Inuit Art Quarterly 29, no. 3 (Fall 2016): 16.
2. Gallpen, "Isabella Weetaluktuk," 16.
4. Philip Lewis, “Isabella Weetaluktuk Shines Light on NFB ARCHIVES,” NFB/blog, accessed July 6, 2017, http://blog.nfb.ca/blog/2016/04/15/isabella-weetaluktuk-shines-light-nfb-archive/.
5. Lewis, "Isabella Weetaluktuk," NFB/blog